FEMINIST FRIDAY 2018

MOTHER’S ROCK!

It is Mother’s Day this Sunday in the United States.  To be honest this is not one of my favorite holidays because it is a day that seems set aside to make everyone feel inadequate about not appreciating their mothers enough.  My feeling has always been come for dinner, call me, tell me you love me once in a while, not just one day of the year.  Anyway…. here is a quirky list of mothers of famous people that I thought you might enjoy.

Ludwig van Beethoven

As a girl, Maria Magdalena Keverich worked as a chambermaid in the homes of the wealthy. Johann van Beethoven was her second husband. She was described as “rather tall, longish face, a nose somewhat bent, spare, earnest eyes and kind. A little colorless perhaps — raised to a passion only for the occasional quarrel with the neighbors.”

Alexander Graham Bell

Eliza Grace Symonds Bell was the daughter of a surgeon in the British Royal Navy and was a talented portrait painter. Although somewhat deaf, she played the piano well. Her deafness inspired her son’s research into hearing, although it was said she did not have a lot of faith in his work.

Dwight David Eisenhower

Though poor, Ida Stover was determined to go to college. She scraped together enough money to attend Lane College in Lecompton, Kan., where she met fellow student David Eisenhower. She was known as a firm but gentle disciplinarian and was deeply religious. It is said she once won a prize for memorizing 1,365 Bible verses. As a pacifist, she was not in favor of her son attending West Point but decided to let him go.

Henry Ford

Mary Litogot grew up on a farm, and met her future husband, William Ford, when she was 12 and he was 26 and came to work on the farm. They married nine years later. Mary was self-sufficient and a diligent worker. Henry later attributed his clean factories to her belief in cleanliness. She encouraged his interest in machines early on. He later said, “I have tried to live my life as my mother would have wished. I believe I have done, as far as I could, just what she hoped for me.”

Napoleon

Letizia Ramolino Bonaparte grew up during the Corsican struggle for independence from Genoa and imparted to her children an early interest in politics. When Napoleon was crowned emperor in 1804, she was feted everywhere as “Madame Mere.” At one time, she had three sons who were kings and one daughter as a queen, but she continued to obsess over accumulating wealth. “I may one day have to find bread for all these kings I have borne,” she said. Letizia outlived most of her famous children.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Alberta Williams King was both the daughter and the wife of Baptist preachers. She taught her children to “always remember you are as good as anyone.” Violence and tragedy became a part of her life. In 1968, Martin Luther Jr. was shot; in 1974, her son Alfred drowned; and in 1974, she herself was killed by a deranged gunman while she was playing the organ in church.

Louisa May Alcott

Abigail May became the patient and long-suffering wife of Bronson Alcott and supported him in all his radical views on education and utopian living. She served as the model for Marmee in “Little Women,” but Louisa always claimed that “Marmee, good though she was, was still not half good enough to do justice to the real woman who inspired her.”

Al Capone

When her son, Alphonse, was found guilty of tax evasion, Teresa Capone came to see him in jail with a big dish of macaroni, tomatoes and cheese. Teresa, who came from Italy as a young woman, could not speak much English, and when her son was transferred to the Atlanta Penitentiary, she could only look at him and mutter a few words; foreign languages were not permitted. She always maintained that Al was “a good boy.”

George Washington

Mary Ball Washington was a strict, authoritarian figure. George always addressed his letters to her with “Honored Madam.” When he wanted to join the British Navy, Mary refused her permission. Shortly after that, George left to live with his brother at Mount Vernon. When news came that he was elected president, he stopped on his way to the capital to give his mother the news — it was the last time he ever saw her.

The Marx Brothers

Minnie Schoenberg was the daughter of a magician and a harpist in Germany. She left that country as a teen to come to New York, where she married a somewhat successful tailor. She encouraged her sons to go into vaudeville. In 1923, although Groucho did not agree with her, she figured they were ready for Broadway — and they were. While being fitted for a dress for opening night, Minnie fell and broke her leg. She was carried to the theater on a stretcher for the opening night show.

Source: “Mothers: 100 Mothers of the Famous and Infamous,” edited by Richard Ehrlich; Paddington Press Ltd.

I invite you to share a story about an inspiring woman in the comments section. Just leave us a link to your post. We can never read too many stories about inspiring women. 

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The quotes in this article came from: “Mothers: 100 Mothers of the Famous and Infamous,” edited by Richard Ehrlich; Paddington Press Ltd.

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FEMINIST FRIDAY

MOTHER’S ROCK!

Mother’s Day will be celebrated on May 14th in the United States.  I started to think about what some famous people had to say about their mothers.  Here are a few quotes:

  • “My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.” – George Washington
  • “The doctors told me I would never walk again. My mother told me I would. I believed my mother.” – Wilma Rudolph
  • “My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me; and I felt I had something to live for, someone I must not disappoint.” – Thomas Alva Edison
  • When my mother took her turn to sit in a gown at her graduation, she thought she only had two career options; nursing and teaching. She raised me and my sister to believe that we could do anything, and we believed her.” — Sheryl Sandberg
  • “All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials, heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine, desert us when troubles thicken around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” – Washington Irving
  • “My family has very strong women. My other never laughed at my dream of Africa, even though everyone else did because we didn’t have any money, because Africa was the ‘dark continent,’ and because I was a girl.”  – Jane Goodall
  • “My mother said to me, ‘If you become a soldier you’ll be a general; if you become a monk you’ll end up as the pope.’ Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.”—Pablo Picasso
  • “My mother said I must always be intolerant of ignorance but understanding of illiteracy. That some people, unable to go to school, were more educated and more intelligent than college professors.”  – Maya Angelou
  • “It seems to me that my mother was the most splendid woman I ever knew… I have met a lot of people knocking around the world since, but I have never met a more thoroughly refined woman than my mother. If I have amounted to anything, it will be due to her.”—Charles Chaplin
  • “My mother taught me about the power of inspiration and courage, and she did it with a strength and a passion that I wish could be bottled.” – Carly Fiorina
  • “I think my mother…made it clear that you have to live life by your own terms and you have to not worry about what other people think and you have to have the courage to do the unexpected.” – Caroline Kennedy
  • Mama was my greatest teacher, a teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. If love is sweet as a flower, then my mother is that sweet flower of love.” – Stevie Wonder

I invite you to share a story about an inspiring woman in the comments section. Just leave us a link to your post. We can never read too many stories about inspiring women. 

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The quotes in this article came from an article posted in Quick Base in May of 2014.